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5 on Friday

16 August 2013

**Update: If you tried to leave a comment earlier and were not successful, I have resolved the issue with the comments section. Please leave a comment to enter the giveaway below.**

I'm starting something new (to me) and will be doing '5 on Friday' each most weeks. There will probably be no method to the madness, just 5 thoughts, things, ideas, creations, recipes, etc. So, here we go...
Oh, and we have a giveaway today!! I'm so excited to share this with you. Check out #5 and enter to win a sweet little outfit from The Dress Up Box!

Do you thrift? Upcycle? Repurpose? It's something I've been trying to do more of lately. One of the reasons I like to make clothes for my children is to save money. But, sometimes, depending on the fabrics used, etc. it can really add up. So, to truly save money, I've been trying to do more upcycling.

A few months ago I stumbled across this big girls dress, I say big girl because it's like a size 14 in, honestly not big, but much bigger than my {nearly} 2 year old. I've purchased some old women's tees to work with, but being that this dress was just kinda big, not huge, it was going to be perfect for my project. Plus, it's a nice yellow and white stripe, perfect for summer, and it's jersey cotton to boot. Winner, winner, chicken dinner.

So, I took some scissors and started cutting. I made some bias tape from a very cute fabric that I had just a little bit leftover. It's a perfect teal-ish/jade green with yellow accents. I added a bit of elastic at the top...and shirred a couple rows of elastic thread to create a cinch at the bodice. I didn't have a pattern, I just went with it...and this entire project, start to finish, took less than an hour. That is what a true upcycle job should be, in my opinion.

I thought about adding some pockets in the same coordinating fabric, or even appliqueing a 'K' on the front...but then decided to keep it simple. Honestly though, if I had my embroidery machine with me, I would have totally put her monogram on the bottom corner in that green color. Oh gosh, that would be cute.

It's a fun and very comfy dress for Karis. Even John looked at it hanging up and said, "this dress looks like it'll be super comfortable for her." That's what we were going for! So, there you have it,  a very quick, easy, cute, and comfy thrift store remodel!

I love newborns! It is such a nice stage. I know that not everyone feels this way. I can honestly say I have loved every single stage with Karis and believe I will continue to do so; I've never wished one minute away. But, there is something so special about the newborn stage. They are so accommodating. I think it's God's grace after the whole delivery thing. That, and postpartum care is actually pretty time consuming. I mean who has an extra hour every day to do 3 sitz baths for 20 minutes each. What?!? I have a 2 week old and a {nearly} 2 year old.

Back to the babies...they make the sweetest sounds. They are tiny and perfect. They sleep through anything...except the night. Ha! I am loving this time with my sweet boy, Jack.

We are doing some behind-the-scenes remodeling on the ol' blog here. So, over the course of the next month or so, you will be seeing some changes. I've been trying to get this going since May, but finally hired a sweet girl to help me. Yay for awesome help! We've got a new domain name...and a new look, all coming soon! I can hardly wait!!

Back when I did this post about freezer meals, I got a few emails and requests for what I use as a substitute for 'cream of _______' soups. I quit using soups like this a while back because of all the chemicals in them...and have found this to be an easy and much healthier alternative. I have not ever had any problems with the consistency or taste of my recipes using this method either.

It's giveaway time!! One of you will win one item of your choice from The Dress Up Box! You fun! As a wife, mom and former-sewing-business-owner-and-will-open-my-business-again-one-day girl, I am so excited to share Wendy and her very unique shop with you. She is very talented and has a really cool story and style.

Here's a little more about Wendy and The Dress Up Box...

Last year my husband left on his first deployment. We were lucky and his deployment length was reduced to six months. Still, that's a long time to be away from a spouse or father and my children and I were eagerly awaiting his return.  I decided to make something for our daughters to wear when we greeted him when he arrived. I made two pettiskirts and had such a great response to them. With the encouragement of my husband behind me, I decided to start making items that military family and friends can have clothing and accessories to show their support and pride for their loved ones. 

I officially opened The Dress Up Box on June 1st, so this business is quite new and I'm so excited and thrilled with the response I've had in the last couple months. 

I use new, store-bought fabric, but can use upcycled fabric from discarded uniforms. The military ends up discarding a large quantity of uniforms in great condition due to minor issues like ink stains that are unable to be removed in one area (but the rest of the uniform is great!), or there is an update in uniform type, so those of the older style get discarded.
When I find some, I always was all uniforms on a sanitary cycle before using them in any garment making. All items made with upcycled fabric are noted in listings. Custom orders are made with new fabric unless otherwise noted. This also allows for customers to donate an old jacket of their loved one and I can make a garment or accessory out of that piece of clothing. 
I also make non-military themed items as well! If you're the winner, your item doesn't have to have the camouflage pattern on it. 

Now, to enter this giveaway, simply leave a comment below...about one of our 5 on Friday items, or what you would like to have Wendy make if you won! (If you don't have a blog or belong to Google+, please make sure you leave an email or I will not be able to contact you if you win.)

This contest will run through Monday evening, and I will announce the winner on Tuesday. Please, be sure to check out Wendy's shop and her Facebook page


  1. I'd love to win one of the ACU Tutu dresses for a few reasons! First, it would be cute for my daughter to have to wear to military functions. Next, I love upcycling for environmental and economical reasons; and last of all, I like the combo of frilly dress-up with Army clothes b/c girls can be princess-y and think about having cool jobs.

  2. Id love a birthday outfit for my 2yr old from Wendy! Her outfits are adorable! I have three little girls so I would get tons of use from her items! We are also on Fort Riley.

  3. I would like one of the ties for my son as he thinks the world of his daddy and his daddy is deploying soon so it would be something cute for family pictures and to wear to his deployment ceremony

  4. I had no idea you owned a sewing business. Explains a lot about "I just... (insert 20 complicated steps)." ;) I love this amazing new business you are doing a giveaway with, and can't even figure out which ONE item I would choose!

  5. I'm having a hard time deciding between the camp tutu and dress... Personally I'd be happy with either one for when my hubby returns from deployment :) great work Wendy!

  6. Love your 5 on Friday! I have thought about participating because I love to read them...they are so fun! :) I would have Wendy maybe make something cute for Grayson's first birthday coming up! :)


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